Jay and Silent Bob bring their trademark crude humor back to big screen

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During the seven years after their appearance in “Clerks 2,” iconic stoner duo Jay and Silent Bob largely remained out of the spotlight. Since their inception as side characters in the cult classic 1994 film “Clerks,” Jay (Jason Mewes) and Silent Bob (Kevin Smith) remained only as background characters in Smith’s View Askewniverse — the fictional universe in which most of his films take place — with the exception of their starring roles in the tongue-in-cheek 2001 comedy “Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back.” But Jay and Silent Bob return to the big screen in the animated medium with their film “Jay and Silent Bob’s Super Groovy Cartoon Movie.” Written by Smith and produced by Mewes, the film is touring major cities.

Considering that “Clerks” is as old as its target audience was when it was released, it’s easy for some to not recognize the characters of Jay and Silent Bob and their type of humor. In an interview with The Daily Californian, Mewes provided a synopsis for the film, stating “C-3PO and R2-D2 discover weed and superheroes.” Though the characters have been around since 1994, Jay and Silent Bob are still comical in their own crude and ridiculous yet serious ways, making their appearances timeless and unique.

For Mewes, “Jay and Silent Bob’s Super Groovy Cartoon Movie” represents his move from more passive roles into the production and craft of film. While Smith has been making films such as “Zack and Miri Make a Porno” and “Red State” since the release of “Clerks 2,” Mewes spent nearly a decade battling substance abuse, which he and Smith discuss publicly on their podcast “Jay and Silent Bob Get Old.” Now, nearly three years clean and married, Mewes feels more focused, and he took on a producer role in “Jay and Silent Bob’s Super Groovy Cartoon Movie.” He stated, “Since I’ve been clean, it’s affected me in the sense that now, going to work, I don’t have to stress about getting drugs the next day … and because of that, I feel like I could focus more on making the movie and the characters.”

Mewes seems passionate about expanding his career in film, as he plans on taking more producer roles. Over the two years of production, his duties included directing voice actors and setting production schedules for animation. This more involved role seems to fit well with his nearly 20 years of experience acting in film. Now seems like the perfect time for Mewes to branch out from his character Jay. Smith has publicly stated that “Clerks 3” will be the last “Clerks” film in the franchise, and Mewes feels like there is room for only one more “Jay and Silent Bob” film before Smith and Mewes become too old for their roles. Nearing the end of this universe, Mewes wants to continue making people laugh through ridiculous characters, even if it is not under the name of Jay.

For old-school fans of Jay and Silent Bob, “Jay and Silent Bob’s Super Groovy Cartoon Movie” seems to be shaping up as a faithful return to these classic stoners, even in its animated form. Premiering at the Warfield Theatre this Saturday, Kevin Smith and Jason Mewes will be at the showing with a full Q&A session immediately after the screening.

Contact Art Siriwatt at [email protected]. Check him out on Twitter at @artsiriwatt.